Astros sign Preston Tucker
Published: Wednesday, July 18, 2012 at 3:44 p.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, July 18, 2012 at 3:44 p.m.
Former Florida outfielder Preston Tucker recently signed with the Houston Astros after being taken in the seventh round of the June Major League Baseball Draft with the 219th overall pick.
All nine players drafted from UF coach Kevin O’Sullivan’s club in June signed professional contracts.
Tucker achieved All-America status from the American Baseball Coaches Association for the second-consecutive season after hitting .321 with 57 runs, 50 RBI, 35 walks, 17 doubles and 16 round-trippers in his final collegiate campaign. He departs Gainesville as the school’s all-time leader in games played (265), games started (259), total bases (596), at bats (1,035), hits (341), RBI (258) and doubles (70).
Tucker was a first-team All-SEC selection in 2012 after being a first-team choice during his junior season and a second-team pick in 2010. He powered UF’s offense with a .393 (11-for-28) performance in NCAA play and became the first Gator to achieve Regional All-Tournament status all four years of his career. He is the lone UF player to earn Most Outstanding Player recognition twice (2009 & 2011). In 30 career NCAA Tourney games, Tucker batted .368 (46-for-125) and holds school records in career at bats (125), hits (46), RBI (31), runs (29), homers (11) and doubles (10).
Over his Gator career, Tucker finished with a .329 average, 1,035 at bats (1st in school history), 341 hits (1st in school history), 258 RBI (1st in school history), 210 runs (6th in school history), 127 walks (8th in school history), 70 doubles (1st in school history), 57 homers (2nd in school history), 24 stolen bases in 32 attempts and seven triples. His fielding percentage of .989 is tied for 10th at UF with Matt LaPorta (2004-07) and his total of 1,197 putouts in second behind LaPorta (1,659) and Zunino (1,340).